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Baby & Toddler Scrapbooking
Price: ± R135.95

I recently became a godmother. Not having any children myself, this is a big deal. I wanted to do something extra special for my cherub of a goddaughter; something she’ll always treasure. This book couldn’t have landed in my lap at a better time, as it’s exactly what I needed – inspiration for an in-depth keepsake of little Rachael’s formative years.

As the title suggests, Baby & Toddler Scrapbooking is all about capturing special baby and childhood moments in dedicated scrapbooks. It’s hands-on, and chock-a-block with ideas for representing those little moments in the most striking ways.

Take the example of the baby boy sleeping on his dad’s chest. His dad, spread out on the couch, has fallen asleep too, cradling his young son. “Some things are more precious…” says the caption. “… than a TV and a remote control,” says the follow-up text. And underneath the photo, the quote: “Enjoy the little things in life, for one day you may look back and realise they were the big things.” Lovely.

As poignant as the photos, the text examples, and the captions are, the instructions and tips are really the most remarkable.  They explain how to arrange the content in the best way, and why.  With dad-and-son-snoozing-together, for instance, we learn that subduing photo backgrounds to black and white will help the subject (dad and son) to become the focal point on the page. 

And of course, you’ll learn all about techniques. You’ll be guided through embellishing, lettering, stamping, creating patterned layers, stitching, journaling, matting, and more.

The authors, Deborah Morbin and Tracy Boomer, already have a host of best-selling craft books behind them. They also both have decoupage backgrounds. This is evident in Baby & Toddler Scrapbooking, where the pages themselves are beautifully crafted and themed. Morbin and Boomer have also developed a really sensible technique called ‘scrapoupage’, adapting decoupage for scrapbooking.

In short, each double-page feature inspires.  And it’s all straightforward, simple stuff – enough to make me print out all those digital photos, and get cracking on my own scrapoupage book for my precious goddaughter.

Reviewed by Irene Walker.
Published by Metz Press.

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Photo Stories
Photo Stories
Price: ± R169.95

The old adage, “A picture paints a thousand words” may be cliché, but it is undeniable how much more entertaining a photograph is when compared to an oral account of a memory. Scrap booking has provided many a crafter with the opportunity to save their precious photographs and cherished memories in the pages of their albums, to be enjoyed for years to come.Photo Stories gives seasoned scrapbook fans and newcomers to the craft descriptions of the twelve most popular scrap booking techniques, each accompanied by a host of full-colour photographs. These photographs highlight each technique through the work of skilled scrap booking crafters from around the world, and aim at inspiring crafters to use the techniques displayed to create their own works of art.The book is really a delight to look at, and one cannot help but be inspired to get crafting by the work displayed within it. Another handy feature within the book is a series of helpful hints peppered throughout its pages. A good resource for those who love to scrap, and those who wish to start.

Reviewed by Lauren Inggs

Published by Metz Press

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Create Your Own Scrapbook
Create Your Own Scrapbook
Price: ± R139.95

This book covers everything you need to know about getting started with scrapbooking - from the various types of equipment and paper you will need, to page layout, how to cut and paste photographs, and fancy lettering and embellishments.

Also available in Afrikaans as Skep jou eie Fotoplakboek

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Cleanline Scrapbooking
Cleanline Scrapbooking
Price: ± R179.00

I've stayed away from scrapbooking for a long time, because I felt that much of what was being offered and taught actually detracted from the photographs themselves, shifting the focus to the (usually rather expensive) embellishments. And then I found this book.

With their typical infectious humour (familiar to anyone who's either met them or read any of their previous books), Tracy and Deborah have succeeded in making scrapbooking accessible, simple and engaging. First off, they present an amusing account of why you really don't need to be quite so neurotic about using acid-free products. It seems photos themselves contain acid... but you'll have to read the book to find out more.

The next section contains all the information you need to get started - covering paper, adhesives, cutting tools, albums, pens, paint, chalk, embellishments and lettering, all in comprehensive detail. Th

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